Stephen Appiah has revealed that he had no interest to accept the Black Stars captaincy due to the respect he had for his senior teammate, Samuel Osei Kuffour.
The former Hearts of Oak and Juventus midfield kingpin is being described as one of the best ever captains to lead the senior national team as the captain.
But according to him, he didn’t want to betray the former Bayern Munich defender, who had sacrificed a lot for the national team.
Appiah said he was persuaded by goalkeeper Richard Kingson and later spoke to Kuffour himself, who both encouraged him to accept the captaincy.
“It was a difficult decision for many reasons. For one, I didn’t want to betray Kuffour, a man I had admired for so long,” Appiah told the EMY Africa Magazine.
“He had accomplished so much and had sacrificed a lot for the good of the team. Some of the things he had done for the team were also the reason why some people didn’t like him.
“It could have been part of why he didn’t want the captaincy. So it was difficult for me. But I accepted after speaking with Sammy.
“He encouraged me to take it and assured me of his support. I realised I had started leading the team anyway and the armband was only going to legitimise what I already was.”
Appiah captained the Black Stars for the first time in an international friendly against Slovenia on May 17, 2002, at the age of just 21.
He went on to lead the team for the next decade, becoming the first-ever skipper to lead Ghana to the FIFA World Cup in 2006 and also played a vital role in Black Stars making history in the 2010 Mundial in South Africa playing in the quarterfinals for the first time in the history of the country.
The 40-year-old played 67 times for the Black Stars and scored 14 goals.